Physical and Chemical Characterization of Chinese Maize Stalk Leaf Ash: Calcining Temperature and Aqueous Solution

Guorui Feng, Tingye Qi, Zehua Wang, Jinwen Bai, Zhen Li


This study focused on the physical and chemical characterization of Chinese maize stalk leaf ash (MSLA) calcined at 500, 700, and 850 °C and MSLA residual leaching in aqueous solutions. The grain size distribution, chemical composition, and microstructure of MSLA were investigated using a laser Mastersizer, X-ray fluorescence, and scanning electron microscopy. The ash samples obtained before and after dissolving were analyzed using X-ray powder diffraction and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy to identify the present minerals and observe the 2p atomic orbit of surface silicon and aluminum (Si 2p and Al 2p) transformation behaviors. The zeta potential and pH values of hybrid solutions were tested for various dissolving times. Silica was the predominant component observed in the MSLA. As dissolving time increased, the pH value gradually decreased, and the zeta potentials first slightly decreased and then remarkably increased. Quartz was identified in the MSLA. Another polymorphous crystalline form of silica, cristobalite, only appeared in the 850 °C sample. The binding energies of Si 2p and Al 2p shifted, which transformed the XPS peaks after the thermal and aqueous solution treatment of MSLA. These findings can be utilized to study the application potential of MSLA in cementing systems.


Maize stalk leaf ash; Calcination temperature; Aqueous solution; Silica

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